Summary: Some new year necessities.

INTRO.- ILL.- "The Fabulous Life of: Arnold Schwarzenegger.” Here it is:

* He smokes $4,000 cigars but that’s not all.

* Arnold is worth up to an estimated $800 million. His holdings in private companies like Microsoft and Starbuck’s are valued at over $20 million.

* Even his shoes are fabulous-a pair of custom Pasquale’s can cost up to $5,000 a pair.

* Arnie’s suits are of the finest Italian variety by Giacomo. A single suit can set him back $3,000.

* When on the ocean, Arnold and family cruise in style on a $4.5 million 88 foot yacht with 2 grand salons, 3 sleeping cabins, and a state of the art entertainment center.

* A trendsetter in military chic, Arnold bought the first civilian model Hummer for $117,000. Today he owns a fleet of 9 Hummers worth an estimated $1 million.

* If he leaves the 88 foot yacht home, Arnold likes to put his head down in St. Bart’s at the exclusive Hotel Guanahani where rooms can cost $2,000 a night.

* The "governator" must keep his body in tiptop shape. To pump up, Arnold always relies on his $3,000 Cybex 700 high-resistance bike.

* Arnie’s hair always needs to be perfect and for that he goes to Stephen Knoll. This hair genius has a $5,500 day rate and the scissors he uses cost up to $400.

* Now for the more positive side of Arnold’s life. He does share his wealth, perhaps not the way we Christians would, however. He’s coached the Special Olympics since 1979 and donates millions to support a multitude of charitable organizations.

My only wish for Arnold is that he might become a Christian and live for Christ. He’s very personable, otherwise.

Brothers and sisters, we tend to think that the Arnold Schwarzeneggar’s of the world are the rich people of the world. And they are! We are astounded at the wealth and the lifestyles of the rich and famous! But they are not the only rich people of the world.

I Tim. 6:17-19 “Command those who are rich in this present world not to be arrogant nor to put their hope in wealth, which is so uncertain, but to put their hope in God, who richly provides us with everything for our enjoyment. Command them to do good, to be rich in good deeds, and to be generous and willing to share. In this way they will lay up treasure for themselves as a firm foundation for the coming age, so that they may take hold of the life that is truly life.”

ILL.- I did a little investigation on Monday evening and here is what I found. I went through my closet and numbered some items. I have: 10 pairs of shoes, 43 various shirts, 23 pairs of pants, and 9 pairs of jeans.

How do I feel about this? I feel blessed, but also somewhat embarrassed. Why? Because there are people in our world who would say, “Look at how rich you are!” And I am.

Guess what I think you should do? Try it sometime and you might be surprised and shocked at your wealth and abundance.

Brothers and sisters, what are the necessities of life? Basically, all we need is food, shelter and clothing. Beyond that, it is pure luxury. Of course, this is not how we feel in affluent America. We feel that almost everything we have or own is a necessity of life. If we were born and raised in many foreign countries, however, we’d feel fortunate to have food, clothing and shelter.

DO YOU KNOW WHAT IS THE GREATEST STATE IN WHICH TO LIVE? It’s not Arkansas. And it’s neither Missouri nor Illinois. It’s not even Florida, California or Hawaii. It’s the state of contentment.

Phil. 4:19 KJV “Not that I speak in respect of want: for I have learned, in whatsoever state I am, therewith to be content.”

Today, we also need to think about spiritual necessities. Everyone has their own idea about spiritual necessities. For example, while many people think that going to church a couple of times a month is good enough, but I suspect that God thinks otherwise!

PROP.- Our text in Romans 12:9-11 gives us a good list of spiritual necessities for the New Year. Let’s think about them and how to get them into our lives to a greater degree.


V. 9 “Love must be sincere.”

ILL.- "Dearest Jimmy, No words could ever express the great unhappiness I’ve felt since breaking our engagement. Please say you’ll take me back. No one could ever take your place in my heart, so please forgive me. I love you, I love you, I love you! Yours forever, Marie... P.S., And congratulations on willing the state lottery." That is not sincere love. Sincere love demonstrates love whether there is any money or not.

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Danny Brightwell

commented on Dec 22, 2014

I love this lesson. It's a great one. Thank you for sharing it. I hope you won't mind if I use it as a pattern for my New Year's sermon.

Steve Shepherd

commented on Jan 30, 2015

Brother Danny, You are welcome to use any of my material. The Lord be praised. God bless you.

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